Anantapur: Real estate boom has given a new twist to scam-hit Lepakshi Knowledge Centre land in Anantapur district. Farmers, who had given away their land for the city and are yet to receive compensation from the APIIC or the Lepakshi Knowledge Centre, have been selling the land following a High Court order. The land sales have increased legal complications, which is likely to affect the government’s move to set up industries.
Almost 900 acres of land with pattas, issued between 1926-1954, have yet to receive compensation. It may be recalled that the Industries and Commerce Department entered a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with Lepakshi Knowledge Hub Private Limited in December, 2008 and extended certain incentives. Lepakshi was supposed to invest Rs 8,000- Rs10,000 crore over 5-10 years and generate employment for around 1.5 lakh youths.
The Andhra Pradesh Industrial Infrastructure Corporation (APIIC) handed over 8,844.01 acres on NH-44 close to Devanahalli International Airport to Lepakshi in 2009 in the first phase, as against total of 12,000 acres in two phases. But, Lepakshi authorities failed to set up industries. Instead, the land was used to raise a loan of Rs 920 crore, which was diverted to a company called Indu Projects Limited.
The government has now decided to take back the lands, but legal wrangles prove to be major hurdles. The farmers, who were not compensated, moved court and got orders to sell their land to realtors. While the other farmers sold at Rs 1.75 lakh per acre, those who had not received compensation, are now selling at Rs 6 lakh per acre. Narayana Reddy and Sreerami Reddy, farmers from Yagnasettipalli said the government should ensure farmers get an attractive package. Recently, Chilamatur sub-registrar Gopal Krishna was caught red-handed by the ACB while accepting a bribe of Rs 25,000 to register 48 acres of such land a week ago. Anantapur registrations DIG Abraham said, he was personally verifying the registrations to curb registration of government lands. An APIIC senior official said they were planning to re-acquire at least 4000 acre from Lepakshi Hub, leaving 4,731 acre of controversial land linked with legal issue....